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Ramblings by Category

Ramblings by Year

nine

On July 2nd, we celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary. It was a rather quiet celebration because we’re dealing with some health issues with our beloved Jinx Puppy.  Blogging about my wonderful husband and our life together took a bit of a backseat during my week off from work as we deal with Jinx and his health.

But it’s been nine years since Shawn and I said our wedding vows (His totally trumped mine. I’ll get him back one day.) and it’s been nine years since Jinxy entered our lives (Best. Wedding. Gift. EVER!). We didn’t do much this year, it’s been a difficult year and we’re just not feeling all that celebratory. Plus, you know, Jinx.

But I love this man with every fibre of my being. There is no end to the laughter that fills our lives, even in the most difficult of times – and believe me, the last couple of years the difficult has been piling up. What tears many others apart, seems to bond us closer together. I know that is one of the luckiest things I could ever hope for in life. We stand stronger together when the going gets tough and tries to take us out. We support each other and have each others’ backs. We don’t let all this foolish negative crap get in the way of our love and our love of each other. We laugh. We joke. We do the best we can with crappy situations and we hold each other up.

I have known Shawn for 15 years and it took me a while to realize that he loved me, and I him. For nine of those fifteen years we have been husband and wife, but those labels really don’t mean as much to us as they do others. What matters most is that we are together. We are a team. We are soulmates.

I could not have gotten through my year of PTSD broken-self misery if Shawn hadn’t been there by my side each and every step of the way. He was the second phone call I made (after 9-1-1) when the guy jumped off the roof and landed almost on top of me. He was the one who took care of me while I was off work on medical leave dealing with all this PTSD crap. He drove me to each therapy appointment and doctor appointment. He went out and got me food or drink from the store when I would have a craving for something and we didn’t have it – and since I was too broken to even feel like eating, he’d get me what I wanted so that I WOULD eat something. All of this he did while being at home himself, because he’d been laid off from work and was job hunting. He was down, I was broken, and together we sat on the couch and watched Scooby Doo episodes on Netflix. We watched cartoons and laughed and he’d cheer me up constantly and once I started feeling better, I’d chatter away aimlessly and I’m sure even though that was annoying, it was helpful to him to have me home as well. When I needed to start venturing out of the house to face the Big Bad World, we’d take weekly trips to brunch, on a weekday when there were fewer people in the restaurant. We had our special brunch together each week – to the point that the wait staff know us now and we don’t always need menus. 😉

We’ve been through layoffs, health issues, loss of dogs who were our hearts, money problems, and more. With each loss we suffer and grieve, but we do so together. And from that inevitably comes laughter. We can’t NOT laugh when we are together. Even now, with the problems we’re facing that are very negative and concerning, and then topped off with Jinx’s serious health mystery, we cry and laugh. There is always a joke around the corner. A smile. A way to ease the pain, while still feeling the pain. We know it’s there, but the laughter keeps us sane and keeps us from crumbling.

This man always manages to make me laugh no matter how dire the situation or how broken I am. I mean, this is how he picked me up at the train station after I came back from visiting Monkey and her husband a week ago:

The number of thoughtful, funny, loving things that this man does for me on a daily basis is astounding. Every single day I am spoiled beyond belief and I always sort of feel like I never do enough in return; that I don’t deserve to be treated as wonderfully and specially as I am treated. Shawn comes up every night when I go to bed to kiss me before I fall asleep. He gets my lunch ready in the morning before work – because I am the most useless morning person in the universe. He makes sure I leave the house wearing pants (ha! Again, useless morning person here. Hi.) He’ll occasionally surprise me with my favourite home cooked meal of roast beef, mashed potatoes, and gravy – and he doesn’t even LIKE roast beef. He’ll make me a cake with butter cream icing to cheer me up. He’s just so full of thoughtfulness and love that I feel like I’m dreaming sometimes. Even with all the crap that’s going on in our lives, making some days feel like they weigh billions of tons, he loves me and he shows me that love in every action.

We laugh. We live. We stand together. We love. And I can’t wait to celebrate another year, and another, and another – to infinity –  with him.

For all of forever. I will love you, Shawn, and you, me.


For all of forever.

Always.

eight

Oh, how time flies. Eight years married. Fourteen years of knowing each other. Ups and downs but always together and always stronger because of the other. I can do anything with this man by my side. I can survive traumatic events. I can find the courage to run (even if he just walks the dogs behind me.) I can laugh. I can cry. I can be myself every second of the day and never feel bad about that. We can survive job loss and strikes and more job loss. We can pick each other up when we’re down and make ourselves laugh at little things and at nothing. But we laugh. We laugh so often and so loud.

We’re super sensitive and we both get rather down at times, but thankfully it doesn’t happen at the same time (too often) and we can both manage to coax a smile and laugh out of the other even then. Things don’t always seem to be easy for us and there’s always some new sort of crap that life tends to throw in our faces just as we think we are getting the hang of things, but we over come each and every crappy thing and stand stronger at the other end of it. It’s tiring though but we just hang out together in our home and close out the rest of the world for a while. We don’t always need to be out hanging with other people and socializing when we’re feeling tired and worn out. But we DO need each other. We will spend as much time together as possible, even if one of us might have to take a day off to do it. When that jumper guy landed in front of me in the spring, Shawn walked me to and from work the next day since I was adamant that I needed to go in to the office (I should have stayed home, I think, but at the time, I needed to do that. But he would have stayed home with me if I chose to stay home. He would have protected me from the panic attacks and nightmares as he did when I WAS home. I slept better once he came to bed. As soon as he was up stairs I knew I was safe.

We are rarely serious when we’re together. We don’t get into fights, though we do argue, but it’s never loud and yelly and heated. We disagree so rarely it’s sort of a surprise when we do. Most of the time we giggle like school kids and giggle at the silliest, and at times inappropriate things. We share the same sense of humour and sense of sarcasm. He’s way funnier than I am though. It’s one of the few things I let him be better than me at. 😉

Tonight we spent our anniversary at home rather than heading into town and the Old Port. I guess we’re getting old because the thought of driving through construction and traffic and then spending forever trying to find a parking place and then having to walk forever to get to the restaurant, just wasn’t all that appealing to us anymore. So we stayed home. Dragged our old, broken (and VERY heavy) BBQ through the house to the front yard in hopes that someone would claim it for scrap metal (they did!). We got dressed in fancier clothes and headed 9 minutes away to our new favourite place for dinner – an authentic Mexican restaurant called Tamales. It has such wonderful food. We splurged and got a bottle of wine (only because I could NOT get a single glass of Rosee wine.) and ate in a place that was pretty much just US the entire time. Some people left a few minutes after we got there and it was empty afterwards. The server (and his small daughter) waited on us like we were royalty. I joked with Shawn that it was nice of him to call ahead and book the entire place just for us on our anniversary. What more could a girl want? (We even left the little girl a tip for being so helpful and great at bringing us plates and water. ;))

This wasn’t our fanciest anniversary and it wasn’t flashy or exciting, but it was exactly what we wanted and needed this year. We just wanted to spend quiet time together and relax. It’s what we did and we are both perfectly content with that.

I think we had a fine Pookaversary. Eight years and counting. I love you.

lucky 7

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On July 2 we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary. I find it hard to believe that we’ve been married for this many years. We’ve been in each other’s lives for 13 years. Thirteen! (My lucky number!)

We’re lucky because our wedding anniversary always falls on a holiday since Canada Day is the 1st. This year the Monday off was our anniversary and we spent the entire long weekend doing fun things and then spent the day out in the Old Port of Montreal as we normally do.

This year, rather that eat at Pub St. Paul as per the norm, we mixed it up and went to The Keg in Old Montreal where I was delighted to discover they had a lobster fest going on. Mmmm. Lobster. We had gotten Keg gift certificates at Christmas and originally were going to use them for my birthday in January but we ended up not going (weather, I think) so lucky us! We even splurged and bought a bottle of wine, too!

We decided to go see the Star Wars Identities exhibit at the Montreal Science Centre before going to dinner. I bought our tickets online (even though they charge $3 each in processing fees for ONLINE tickets. Geez.) and I would highly suggest if you want to go over the summer to buy your tickets online because the days sell out FAST. So we drove to the Old Port under ominous cloud coverage and of course as soon as we stepped out of the car it started to rain. Thanks, nature.

We skeedaddled from the parking lot towards the Science Centre and managed to get out from under the rain clouds. Halfway between the car and the Centre we ran into this:

If you’re not from Montreal you might not realize how awesome it is to find a truck that sells Monsieur Felix and Mr. Norton cookies. You might not realize how DELICIOUS these cookies are. Seriously. If you look really close you can see the little TV in the truck is playing videos of Cookie Monster. Awesome! We got 6 cookies and each scarfed three as we hoofed it to the Centre. We had to be there 15 minutes before our slotted time and we were cutting it close. But… COOKIES! And I was starving.

As for the Star Wars exhibit… I’d suggest you go when there are no crowds. It wasn’t that bad on July 2 towards the end of the day, but you get awfully bottle-necked even though they only let in groups of 15-20 every 15 minutes. There are 10 interactive stations where you get to create your own character and though some stations have really quick flow, others have people lined up and trying to cut in line so it doesn’t flow as well. We got stuck at two stations pretty bad, but you didn’t want to skip them because you wanted to create your character! And there was supposedly a place where you could put in your email at the end and have your character information sent to you. We didn’t see this at all, so all the extra questions we answered about personality, etc seemed sort of moot. I did take photos of our characters though!

If you squint really hard you can see tiny characters of each of us in the background of each photo. It shows the character yours is friends with. So Shawn’s in the back of mine (Wookie) and I’min the back of his. I didn’t even notice that until my friend Elise told me we should be in the photo. heh We’re both bounty hunters! Wookies look silly with bounty hunter armour.

Then we went to dinner, ate a lot, drank some wine (I know! Me! I’m getting to be quite the lush this summer!) I even went out and actually BOUGHT the wine I liked from The Keg. It’s a rosĂ©. I am sure you were all dying to know that.

We both had Tuesday off for various reasons so it was nice to go out, eat, wander around and not have to worry about getting up early the next day. It was a relaxing and fun anniversary.

So much has happened to us in the last few years, heck, there have been challenges all throughout the 7 years we’ve been married but each and every time we’ve come out stronger and more in love. We have our silly moments that just fill my heart with love. We don’t call each other on the phone every day or email back and forth from work as much as we used to (way back in the early stages) but we find new ways to love each other. We always travel to and from work together and if we can manage it, we’ll grab lunch together too during the work week. I will stay later at work just to make sure I catch the same bus as my husband and he comes in earlier than he needs to just to take the bus with me.

There were no gifts this year (although I did go to NYC for a week and Shawn did get a new computer, so that’s good enough. Oh! And I bought us tickets to see The Muppets at the end of this month as one of the Just for Laughs Galas!) and no cards even – our days were such that we ran out of time to actually get to a card store! But we spent the gorgeous weather long-weekend together and just did things at our own pace and on our own time. That is bliss as far as I am concerned.

Seven years is a long time, yet it’s no time at all. I think that a great marriage is one that only gets better with age and the years seem to pass so quickly that you can’t believe how many have gone by because it feels like you just had your first date only a moment before. Being with someone whom you can always laugh with, even through all the crap that gets thrown at you is more precious than any wealth or bauble you could have. I am so thankful and grateful that I have Shawn in my life and because of his strength and support I can handle anything that gets thrown my way.

I love you, Pook. For all of forever.

(Even if we can’t seem to ever take a proper photo of ourselves. ;))

six

Every year I write something terribly mushy and sweet about how happy I am to be married to the man I love more and more every day. I am not running out of mushy, sweet things to say but I feel like I say the same things over and over again. This doesn’t make them less true, I just feel like a broken record. I can’t help being so in love and happy. These feelings continue to increase every day rather than diminish. I want to spend 70 years with this man, like my grandparents spent together (this July 12 would have been their 70th anniversary had they not passed away. However they would have been a couple for 73 years. I find that truly amazing.)

Canada Day has always been our thing. This Canada Day we relaxed, enjoyed time together, saw a movie (X-Men: First Class – very good!), did some groceries, practiced my driving and ordered pizza for dinner. We didn’t go out to the festivities. We didn’t see people. We just spent the day together. Today will be much of the same. We have to go back to the grocery store because when we got there the pharmacy was closed and I need pills for today. Heh.  We will be having dinner at Pub St. Paul as is the norm (with the exception of last year) and we will spend time together today and just enjoy each other’s (others?) company.

It seems sort of cheesy and corny (and other food producty things) to say but Shawn has changed my life for the better. We can be as silly as we want and as serious as we want (silly tends to always win though) and we’re always on the same page. We finish each others (other’s? GAH!) thoughts, sentences and tend to say the same jokes at the same time. He’s there to help me up the stairs when my switch gets flipped and I am about to fall over from exhaustion. He tucks me in every night. He’ll tell me stories to help me fall back asleep if I am up in the night with anxiety or a bad dream. He makes up the best stories on the fly.

Today we have been married for 6 years and I love him more every day.

Thanks for your patience with me, Pook, you make me a better woman just by loving me.

five

This was five years ago today:

The sun was shining, it was hot, but not too hot, but hot enough that I still worshiped whomever created air conditioning. We were surrounded by family and friends and there was so much love. Family and friends who traveled from far away places like Gaspe, North Bay, Toronto, Boston, Texas and California (not to mention the West Island and South Shore!).

It was a brilliantly wonderful day. There were dogs, there were cupcakes, there was laughter.

Shawn and I never thought we would get married. All it meant to us was a piece of paper and it could never fill our hearts with more than we already had. I’m not sure when that changed and why we suddenly found ourselves engaged and planning a wedding. We’re notorious for our hatred of weddings. But there we were. We wanted a wedding our way and made sure that it reflected us as much as it celebrated the union of two people. We weren’t going to get married if the act itself meant nothing to us.

Today, I see the rings on my finger and sigh contentedly almost every time. If I have to take them off for any reason (hospital tests, surgery, etc) I feel naked. Empty. Alone. I know it’s just a symbol, but it’s a symbol that means something TO ME. My engagement ring is ME, it’s not bling or yellow gold and HUGE BIGASS LOOK AT ME DIAMOND. It’s simple and colourful. The wedding band is titanium. We’re not flashy people. We’re simple and we flaunt that simplicity in our own way.

I cannot imagine my life without Shawn. Not once, not ever. The thought of never seeing him again for any reason starts a full-blown panic attack. Even my being away from him for a week in May while in New York was hard. I know, its sappy, but I couldn’t call him and not being able to speak with him for a week was very difficult.

Just driving to the grocery store together makes me so happy. Little things like that always have been comfortable and so full of love. Sitting together in the same room, on different laptops might seem odd to some but to us it’s the act of being near each other that’s important as we do our own independent things. We’ll call each other over and discuss something we read, or hold up the computer to show a photo that will make us laugh, or awww. Just being close is safety and contentedness.

We didn’t celebrate Canada Day the way we used to this year. We didn’t celebrate our anniversary as much as we normally do this year either. But we were together. We went out to pick up our mail at the Canada Post warehouse and then off to renew prescriptions and then off to the pharmacy to pick up the passport that wasn’t delivered to the warehouse, but the slip saying we had a parcel was (again!) and then we went to BestBuy and picked up LEGO Harry Potter with the BestBuy reward certificates we had accumulated and then, we came home and played LEGO Harry Potter until it was time to leave for dinner at The Keg in Old Montreal. For the last bunch of years we’d eat in the Old Port at Pub Saint Paul on the 2nd of July and it became tradition. This year, thanks to gift cards from my in-laws, we stepped it up a notch and had dinner and then walked briefly around the Old Port realizing there’s really nothing much of interest to us there anymore. It’s sort of sad. The magic that we felt over Canada Day weekend in the Old Port 10 years ago wasn’t there anymore. We’re old and jaded and have found more important things to do with our time together. Not, more important, rather, different. We’re evolving and we’re doing it together.

Our desires, our likes, our loves, our loathes… they are changing but they are still changing together, even after all of these years. It’s why we work. We work because we are on the same path and have been for a very long time.

My grandparents would have celebrated their 69th wedding anniversary on the 12th of this month had they still been alive. I want that. They are the couple I hold most in regard. They changed and evolved and followed the same path together for 70 years when my grandfather passed away. That is rare and a blessing. I want to follow in their footsteps and with Shawn, I know that is possible. We might not live that long, but as long as we do live, we’re on the right path.

He’ll always hold my heart as I hold his.

And this is us today: